Family Medicine Professor Receives Prestigious International Award

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Ruth Wilson, a former College of Family Physicians of Canada president, was awarded the Wonca 5-Star Doctor Award.

This is the top global recognition for doctors who are a part of the World Organization of National Colleges, Academies and Academic Associations of General Practitioners/Family Physicians (Wonca). It is only awarded to practitioners who have made a significant contribution toward the well-being of people and social groups due to their individual efforts.

Dr. Wilson – a professor of Home Medicine at Queen’s University – is one of two recipients of the award, and said “This is a tremendous honor. I’ve had a lot of people come up to me jokingly asking how it feels to be one of the best doctors in the world.”


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Wilson was appointed the chair of the Department of Family Medicine in 1991 and during her 10-year tenure she created a program that dispatched faculty to post-war Herzegovina and Bosnia where they assisted in training family doctors. The Centre for Studies in Primary Care was also established at Queen’s by Professor Wilson, which she proudly states “continues to thrive today.”

Her contributions and milestones are numerous, and include serving as chair of the Ontario Family Health Network, a local government organization set up to implement primary care reform in the province. She is also involved in performing research work in the field of female and aboriginal health.

Consisting of groups interested in the academic aspects of basic home medicine, Wonca has more than 250,000 family doctors as members from 120 groups in 99 different countries.

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Photo courtesy Queen’s University News Centre